CLEARER THINKING

with Spencer Greenberg
the podcast about ideas that matter

Episode 117: How to form habits effectively (with Jim Davies)

August 11, 2022

How can we form good habits more effectively? What roles do reward and punishment play in the habit formation process? And what roles should they play? How should we structure our daily schedules around new habits to maximize the likelihood that they'll stick? If our goal is to do 100 push-ups a day, it's often easier to start with 10 and increase the difficulty over time; but at what level of difficulty should we start, and how quickly should we approach the target difficulty? How does willpower connect (or not) with habit formation? Why should we care about animal consciousness? When it comes to estimating how much good specific interventions will do, are bad estimates better than no estimates at all?

Dr. Jim Davies is a professor of cognitive science at Carleton University. He is the author of Imagination: The Science of Your Mind’s Greatest Power; Riveted: The Science of Why Jokes Make us Laugh, Movies Make us Cry, and Religion Makes us Feel One with the Universe; and Being the Person Your Dog Thinks You Are: The Science of a Better You. He co-hosts (with Dr. Kim Hellemans) the award-winning podcast Minding the Brain. Learn more about him at jimdavies.org or follow him on Twitter or Facebook.

Click here to return to the list of all episodes.


Subscribe

Sign up to receive one helpful idea and one brand-new podcast episode each week!

Subscribe via RSS or through one of the major podcast platforms:


Credits

Host / Director
Spencer Greenberg

Producer
Josh Castle

Audio Engineer
Ryan Kessler

Factotum
Uri Bram

Transcriptionist
Janaisa Baril

Music
Lee Rosevere
Josh Woodward
Broke for Free
zapsplat.com
wowamusic
Quiet Music for Tiny Robots

Affiliates
Please note that Clearer Thinking , Mind Ease , and UpLift are all affiliated with this podcast.